New Delhi: On Tuesday, Kerala government moved the Supreme Court demanding to declare the Constitutional Amendment Act unconstitutional. Thus Kerala became the first state to approach the apex court against the controversial Act.
Kerala urged the court to declare CAA, Passport (Entry to India) Amendment Rules, 2015 and Foreigners (Amendment) Order, 2015, null and void as they violated Article 14, 21 and 25 of the the Constitution of India as well as the principle of secularism enshrined in the Constitution.
The Parliament had passed CAA on December 11, 2019.
Kerala's petition stated that the CAA, Passport Rules Amendments and the Foreign Order Amendments violated articles Article 14 (Equality before law), 21 (Protection of life and personal liberty) and 25 (Freedom of conscience and free profession, practice, and propagation of religion) of the Constitution.
"Sections 3 and 6 of the Act results in classifications based on religion and based on country, both classifications being apparently and manifestly discriminatory, arbitrary, unreasonable and have no rational nexus with the object sought to be achieved. The arbitrary classification of the three countries without any rationale or standard principles constitutes manifest arbitrariness and violates Article 14 of the Constitution," stated the petition.
The petition also said there is no rationale in not extending rights conferred to a class of minorities from Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh to reiligous minorities from Sri Lanka, Myanmar, and Bhutan, which are sharing international borders with India.
"The Act is bereft of any standard principle or norm in discriminating migrants from other countries such as Sri Lanka, Myanmar and Bhutan, which are sharing international borders with India and to which and from which there has been trans-border migration. There is no rationale
in not extending the rights conferred to a class of minorities from Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh to religious minorities belonging to Sri Lanka, Myanmar and Bhutan," stated the petition.
On December 31, the Kerala Assembly had unanimously passed a resolution against the Act, calling it a violation of fundamental rights.
While presenting the resolution, the chief minister said the CAA was against the "secular" outlook and fabric of the country and would lead to religion- based discrimination in granting citizenship.
"The Act contradicts the basic values and principles of the Constitution. In view of the anxiety among the people of the country, the Centre should take steps to drop the CAA and uphold the secular outlook of the Constitution," he had said.